Age UK Suffolk are delighted to be in partnership with Suffolk law firm, Gotelee, in 2020, across a series of activities including The Big Chinwag, Pop Up Chinwags and the charity’s annual Will Month scheme.
National figures suggest that 6 million people over 65 in England are in need of support, whether because of poor health, poverty, inadequate housing or simply because they are lonely. Age UK exists to help these people across the country
Locally, the team at Age UK Suffolk provide a host of services to the elderly and family carers. Being a predominantly rural county, reaching out and supporting our elderly can be a challenge. There are 17,000 people in Suffolk aged 65+ who say that they are ‘often or always lonely’ and go for long periods of time without having conversation with others. Age UK Suffolk are committed to tackling this by providing befriending services, a community links programme, home help service and an information and advice helpline providing support, when people do not know where else to turn.
A vital part of Age UK Suffolk’s work is through the ‘Big Chinwag’ and ‘Pop Up’ Chinwags. The Big Chinwag is an awareness and income generating campaign that runs each year, inviting businesses, schools, community groups and individuals to host a “Big Chinwag” – essentially a form of cake bake sale to encourage that much needed conversation, whilst also raising vital income for the charity.
Businesses, community groups and schools find the Big Chinwag a very enjoyable way to raise money for Age UK Suffolk. Gotelee Solicitors will be encouraging as many Suffolk based people and organisations to host their own Big Chinwag this year, as well as hosting their own “Gotelee Chinwag” (with plenty of cake) in June.
Jo Reeder, Head of Fundraising & Marketing for Age UK Suffolk said “We are delighted to be working with Gotelee through our Big Chinwag campaign. The message is clear – it’s all about encouraging conversation and what better way to do this than by having a cuppa and a piece of cake? It’s important to us in so many ways – by learning and sharing stories, building friendships and understanding the issues that affect older people. It’s something that anyone and everyone can get involved in”.
The Pop Up Chinwags form part of the Community Links programme that has been developed by the charity in the last year and focus on hosting monthly social groups for older people, offering a simple format of tea, cake, entertainment, and the opportunity to access information about support and services in a trusted, non-pressured environment. With the massive projected increase in the number of older people in Suffolk, it’s vital that provision is made for people in the communities in which they live.
Andrew West, Managing Partner at Gotelee adds “We have worked closely with Age UK Suffolk for a number of years, signposting families to their services and taking part in their initiatives. Many people prepare for retirement and later life by making lasting powers of attorney and Wills, which is absolutely the right thing to do. However, we meet many clients who are facing not only legal issues, but also more general, everyday problems associated with the challenges faced by older generations, and also linked challenges of being or becoming a family carer. We wanted to do more to provide support to those who feel vulnerable or lonely. Our partnership with Age UK Suffolk will help bring about more conversations and help others in understanding how to prepare for their later years, post-retirement. We encourage families to support this great initiative.”
To find out more about the services offered by Age UK Suffolk visit www.ageuk.org.uk/suffolk/our-services.